London Wasps were given a huge pre-Amlin Challenge Cup semi-final boost with the news that Riki Flutey is quitting France to return to Adams Park next season.
The England and British & Irish Lions centre made a mere nine appearances for Brive this season because of a series of injury problems. And now he has been released by the Top 14 outfit he has opted to return to Wasps.
Flutey's new three-year deal will allow him to try to add to the 2008 Guinness Premiership title he claimed with Wasps. It was while at Wasps, who he joined from London Irish in 2007, that he won the first of his 13 England caps and was selected for the Lions tour to South Africa.
"I'm delighted to be returning to London Wasps. I would like to thank Brive for the opportunity and experience, which I have enjoyed, but I am now fully focussed on getting my injury niggles behind me and getting back to my best level as a player," said Flutey.
"I have every desire to play to the best of my ability for both club and country and I believe I can really do that in the Wasps environment."
Wasps' director of rugby, Tony Hanks, has described Flutey, who played in the third Test against the Springboks in 2009, as "a world class footballer".
"His ability to play 10 or 12 at the highest level is proven by recent international form at 12 and as fly half when Wasps secured the Guinness Premiership title in 2008 - that versatility makes him a very special player," said Hanks.
"He has achieved success with Wasps before and knows what we are about. Riki made a decision based on rugby and reflects confidence in the Club's structure, environment and the values we stand for.
"His professionalism is something that has always impressed us and we are looking forward to the impact he will make both on and off the field within the squad."
As part of the build-up to next month's Cardiff 2014 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup finals weekend, ERC has joined forces with the WRU, Cardiff Blues and adidas to develop an annual grassroots community rugby programme targeting young players.
The Ulster Rugby full back, Jared Payne (No 15), has been suspended for two (2) weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin arising from the Heineken Cup quarter-final match against Saracens at Ravenhill Stadium on Saturday, 5 April.